Trinley Thaye Dorje was born in Tibet in 1983. He was the first son of the 3rd Mipham Rinpoche, a great Nyingma Lama, and Dechen Wangmo, the daughter of a noble family descending from King Gesar of Ling.
At the age of one and a half, he started telling people that he was the Karmapa. In 1994, he and his family managed to escape from Tibet to arrive in New Delhi. He was enthroned as the 17th Karmapa by His Holiness the 14th Kunzig Shamar Rinpoche, the second most senior Karma Kagyu lama. He was given the name of Trinley Thaye Dorje, which means Limitless Unchanging Buddha Activity.
In December 2003, after completing his formal education, he was declared “Great Tantric Master” (in Sanskrit “Vajracharya“).
Today, Karmapa travels extensively to meet people of all walks of life to share the Dharma of peace, spirituality, conflict resolution and education. He currently resides in at the Karmapa International Buddhist Institute (KIBI) in New Delhi, India.
Here are the 10 inspirational quotes from Trinley Thaye Dorje:
#1 – Teacher
If you try to find someone completely perfect in every way, then you will never find them. So in that way, we have to somehow not compromise but understand and accept that when we are in a human condition, the human condition is such that there is always imperfection. That’s its nature. So when we accept it, then somehow it works. I think that’s one way to have a realistic approach about finding a teacher.#2 – Compassion
Our compassion and dedication are not only limited to a circle of close friends or family. We can go farther and reach out to any individual we come across, meaning eventually all sentient beings, not just humans or animals but beyond that, to all sentient beings of the six different realms and of the entire universe of samsara.
#3 – Hope
Loss of hope means the loss of everything. When we lose hope, this can drive us to the brink of doing unnecessary things. As practitioners, may we have the wisdom to use this golden opportunity to offer hope. We may not be able to change the course of karma for others, but what we can do is be an example and inspiration. And by being a positive role model, by being a good example, this in turn can bring immense hope.
#4 – Openness
It is important that we try to open ourselves for others as much as we can. If we do that properly, then the result and the benefit is that we feel very much at ease, we feel guilt-free, and that’s the best thing in life. Without guilt, one feels completely free and one feels like one can do anything. If we are free of such guilt, if we are free of such uneasiness, then it inspires the individuals next to us, which in turn inspires their friends, and the benefit multiplies. And then we have happiness and bliss in our life. So that is the benefit of having great openness of heart and mind for others, and we are able to accomplish that through the practice of dedication.
#5 – Intention
If you plant a crop with a very simple intention, and you also nurture it in a simple way, then the crop that grows will also be simple, and its yield will also be according to it. However, if the intention, the care and all the positive conditions are great, then so is its yield. So what the Buddhist philosophy strongly suggests is that if we want to have a great harvest, the causes and conditions must be great.
#6 – Mind
Inner Wealth is our mind, our consciousness. I believe that this mind is like a wish-fulfilling jewel. If you know how to utilise this mind, it can produce the most beneficial effects. The best way to utilise and develop this mind is to absorb knowledge, and the most important kind of knowledge is the one that makes us a kind person, a decent person, a person worthy of respect.
#7 – Happiness
Finding meaning in our lives is not just about being watchful of cause and effect in this life, but using the means of causality to find happiness in future lives as well. With this kind of progression, we become more aware and more bent on accumulating merit, not just for this life, but for future lives as well. And in this manner, we become more noble as a person and eventually find meaning in our lives.
#8 – Change
We need to absorb and make sense of the fact that everything is in flux. This change is the productivity that we are supposed to gain, whether we are on a physical or mental journey. We have to come to understand that everything is change.
#9 – Refuge
We don’t have to worship. We don’t have to idealise the Buddha. All we need to do is learn from his example. That’s the real refuge I think, because there is no other better example than how he achieved his way.
#10 – Bodhicitta
This potential we have, this Bodhichitta or ‘Enlightened Mind’, is a very skilful way to see ourselves as more than just a human being, more than just a sentient being or an individual – to go beyond what is known as ordinary view. Extraordinary not in terms of better than the rest or not as good as others, but extraordinary in terms of seeing ourselves as having no differences in absolute terms. Temporary appearances are there. There are differences in terms of temporary conditions, but in absolute there are not. So gradually, we train the mind in this way and then we try to see that actually there is no need to focus or habitualize our mind in terms of thinking ‘you’ and ‘me.’